An exclusive report from Deadline reveals that not only is a new Evil Dead movie in the works, but also that up-and-coming French director Sébastien Vanicek will direct.
The next Evil Dead is described as a “spin-off” by Deadline, so that would seem to indicate that it will not be a direct sequel to 2023’s Evil Dead Rise or any other film in the series. Current plot details are, as expected, completely unknown at this time, so we’ll have to wait for more information until we can begin getting excited about the new story.
What we can get excited about is the prospect of a new director’s vision being added to the already fantastic track record of the Evil Dead franchise. Fede Alvarez brought Deadites back to the big screen when he directed Evil Dead (2013) in his feature-film directorial debut. A decade later Lee Cronin crafted a new spin on the franchise’s lore when he directed Evil Dead Rise (2023) in only his second full-length feature. Now, with Sébastien Vanicek getting ready to direct the next installment, it would appear that the current game plan for Evil Dead is to give extremely talented yet lesser-known directors a chance to shine with the amazing platform of one of cinema’s most consistently fun horror series.
Sébastien Vanicek currently has one feature film to his credit on IMDB, the spider-infestation movie Infested (aka Vermin, 2023). Infested is a French film that hasn’t yet been released in North America (as of now it is scheduled to stream on Shudder this April), but even just looking at the trailer you can see why Vanicek was selected for Evil Dead. Infested looks dark, claustrophobic, skin-crawling, and terrifying in an exhilarating way—everything you’d want in an Evil Dead movie.
No indication of a hopeful release date was made in the Deadline report, so now we just have to wait. Late in 2023 Bruce Campbell spoke with Collider about the future of the Evil Dead franchise after Evil Dead Rise, and Campbell said, “we’re going to do them more like every two to three years now.” So, maybe a 2025 release date for Sébastien Vanicek’s Evil Dead isn’t unreasonable? Maybe 2026?
As for the possibility of Bruce Campbell returning for the film, never say never, just don’t expect Ash. Campbell made a post-credits cameo in Evil Dead (2013), and he made a voice cameo in Evil Dead Rise (as one of the priests on the records played by Danny). Something like that could happen again, but Campbell announced his retirement as Ash on Twitter back in 2018. He did say (probably jokingly) that he would break his retirement if Sam Raimi ever came back to direct another Evil Dead movie, but don’t get your hopes up for that happening either.
Really though, the current incarnation of Evil Dead feels like it’s exactly what it needs to be. In an era where other major horror franchises like Halloween, Scream, and Saw are attempting to weave overt connections throughout ongoing sagas with varying degrees of success, Evil Dead is giving us new stories with new characters. Do you want to pick up the threads in Evil Dead (2013) and Evil Dead Rise and connect them to the earlier franchise entries? That’s fine, you can do that. But you can also watch each of those newer movies as standalone films. Sébastien Vanicek’s Evil Dead hopefully continues that trend.